Can I avoid getting a shoplifting charge on my record? 8 Answers as of April 25, 2014

I have been arrested for shoplifting at a department store. They called the police and I was taken in handcuffs to the station for fingerprinting and pictures but I was not told my rights but I did admit to the crime. I received a citation of $364 and court is not mandatory. This is a first time offense and I have a squeaky clean record before this. I am 20 years old and I am hoping to keep this off my record. What are the chances of keeping my record clean? Should I hire an attorney?

Ask a Local Attorney. 100% Anonymous. Free Answers.

Free Case Evaluation by a Local Lawyer: Click here
Michael Breczinski
Michael Breczinski | Michael Breczinski
Yes get a lawyer and fight the matter otherwise it will be on your record.
Answer Applies to: Michigan
Replied: 4/25/2014
Anderson Law Office
Anderson Law Office | Scott L. Anderson
You should definitely hire an attorney. A good attorney gives you the best chance to keep it off of your record.
Answer Applies to: Minnesota
Replied: 4/25/2014
Reza Athari & Associates, PLLC | Seth L. Reszko
You have the right to contest the charges. If the police did not read you your rights, you can possibly exclude your admission of guilt. However, that will not be so easy. If you do accept a plea by paying the fine or contest the case and either enter a plea later or are found guilty by the Court, that will remain on your record. You do have the right to seal a misdemeanor conviction after two years from the date that the case is closed. Whether or not you need an attorney is a personal choice only you can make but if you are going to contest the case, you are always better off with an attorney.
Answer Applies to: Nevada
Replied: 4/25/2014
Law Office of James E. Smith
Law Office of James E. Smith | James Smith
Need to petition to seal your record.
Answer Applies to: Nevada
Replied: 4/25/2014
Freeborn Law Offices, P.S.
Freeborn Law Offices, P.S. | Steve Freeborn
Yes, I suggest that you hire an attorney. Upon conviction, a shoplift carries a maximum penalty of 1 year in jail and a $5,000.00 fine. An attorney may be able to keep this off your record if it is your first offense.
Answer Applies to: Washington
Replied: 4/25/2014
    The Rogers Law Firm
    The Rogers Law Firm | Andrea Storey Rogers
    The police don't have to read you your Miranda rights, even if they arrest you. If you plead guilty or are convicted, you will have a shoplifting conviction on your record forever, and it can never be removed. I highly recommend that you hire an attorney to represent you if you want to get this charge dismissed or reduced to a lesser offense.
    Answer Applies to: Missouri
    Replied: 4/25/2014
    Law Office of Brendan M. Kelly
    Law Office of Brendan M. Kelly | Brendan M. Kelly
    Yes, best to hire an attorney and have the matter go to diversion.
    Answer Applies to: Nebraska
    Replied: 4/25/2014
    Austin Legal Services, PLC
    Austin Legal Services, PLC | Jared Austin
    I would suggest hiring an attorney, or at the very least consult with one. Look for a criminal defense attorney with substantial experience in defending retail fraud and shoplifting charges. Most jurisdictions offer diversion programs for fist offenders that upon successful completion you would have no public record of the offense. Other sentencing options may be available as well that would have the same effect.
    Answer Applies to: Michigan
    Replied: 4/25/2014
Click to View More Answers: